Think about big businesses and the value of their brands. Companies like Nike, Coca-Cola and Apple are still big thanks to the consistent management of their brands. I don’t think that any of their investors would decide from one moment to another to remove the budget for the management of their brand identity. That´s because they know the damage this would cause to the positioning of their companies. If you as businessman think that hiring a professional to design and maintain your brand is an expense, I invite you to change your mind and to wisely invest in what will be the image that represents your business.
For you, my dear clients
This time, I decided to write another article addressed to potential clients of brand designers and touch that delicate issue for some: money. These days people are still thinking that hiring a designer is an excessive and unnecessary expense (Designer? What for?). But it’s not like that at all, and deep down you know it. The brand of a product or company is the first direct contact that they have with their audience. Hence the importance of this possesses a graphic quality that represents unequivocally their purpose and the services they provide. Also, it has to be easy to remember and reproduce in different applications and media.
Designing a brand isn’t something that you can be dispensed with, if you want to do things right. As entrepreneur know that when starting our business we don’t count with enough money to do everything from the beginning. But there are things that are essential to start, and the brand is one of them. Why is it essential? Because initially it will be our “presentation card” to enter the market and the image our customers will recognize us with.
Reasons to invest in your brand
1. IDENTIFY YOURSELF
As I say in my services page: a company or product brand is like our physical features, which sends messages about our personality, affecting the way people perceive us and also the way we relate to each other. It generates the visual codes that will make your company or product recognizable. Thus, it’s essential to have that image that identifies you.
2. POSITIONING IN THE MARKET
Big companies know it. That’s why they invest enough in advertising messages that stand out the values of their brand. It’s here where the role of the brand manual becomes protagonist. You can have the visually strongest brand in the industry, but if its management is irregular in different applications, it will lose its visual strength. With the visual consistency of your brand, your customers will recognize you easily, which over a period of time is reflected in the level of positioning.
3. ATTRACT NEW CUSTOMERS
It’s directly linked to positioning. The more people recognize and value your brand, the more people will be attracted to it. This is also connected with the values that you sell through it. There are companies which sell products that are harmful to health, such as alcohol or tobacco, but these companies search the manner to position their brand in a positive way by linking it with lifestyles that make the product more attractive. Thus, new customers are attracted by those concepts that they relate directly to your brand.
4. STRENGTHEN YOUR RELATIONSHIP WITH YOUR CURRENT CUSTOMERS
When a brand is recognized and valued by its customers, it’s harder to be left by competition. To accomplish this, you need to remind your customers who you are and why they chose you, something impossible to do without a brand that identifies you.
5. INCREASE THE VALUE OF YOUR COMPANY OR PRODUCT
The customers perception determine the value of a brand. This value increases when more people are interested in buying its products or services, even if they have to pay a little bit more for them. That’s the case of Apple, the brand most valued in 2016 according to research conducted by Forbes (North American magazine specialize in business and finance). Or as in the case of search engines, most people are inclined to Google, and for many it is the only existing search engine, “if you want to know something just ask Google”. Hence the importance of designing your brand and work on it to make it stronger, consistent, outstanding and positively impact your customers, so gradually it will acquire a value that will be reflected in your income.
Requirements to create your brand
1. HAVE A CONCEPT
For example, your company is specialized in mobile phone services, but there are more businesses in the world offering the same. So, what will make your company special? The answer to this question is translated into a concept that represents the purpose of your company and that “plus” you are providing through your business. This must be represented graphically in your brand. Whitout a concept you’ll only get an empty and generic brand.
2. KNOW THE MARKET
What is your target audience? Who is your competition? How are the dynamics of the market which you are approaching? Which are the social, cultural and economic conditions that will make people lean toward your business? These factors and others, such as politics and the environment, influence the perception of your brand. Therefore must be considered in the design process. You must have this clear right from the beginning, so that you create your business with the ability to remain afloat for long time.
3. HAVE TIME
Yes, the designer is responsible for linking all those concepts and market criteria to translate them into your brand. But your presence in this process is important because you, as explained in the previous section, are the one who really knows your business and your goals. Working together with the designer in that analysis stage it’s essential to carry out this process properly.
How much are you willing to invest in your brand? What is the quality you expect according to that amount? Remember that branding is an investment (as the place for your business), from which you’ll get economic benefits. Personally, I think that for brand design the expression “cheap works out more expensive” applies, which doesn’t mean you have to invest an exorbitant sum of money. Just as there are large agencies that charge loads to design good brands, there are trained independent designers who work with the same quality at more affordable prices, ought to we don’t have to pay wages to other designers, neither pay a high rent to maintain a large office.
5. HIRE A DESIGNER SPECIALIZED IN BRANDING
This point may sound obvious, but it’s better to err on the side. The person you hire to design your brand should be a professional specialized in branding with experience in this field. If he fulfills these requirements, he will be more able to design a most successful brand, visual and conceptually.
It’s not only to make “something nice”
Brand design goes beyond, as the requirements show it. And as a lawyer, a doctor or an operator, the work of a designer has a cost. These costs vary according to their experience, studies and graphic quality. If you want a good brand, you should invest enough in it, and if you don’t have all the money at the time, you can make an agreement with the designer, like paying his work in installments. This way, you will save an expenditure to solve a problem momentarily and, at the same time, you have made a good investment.